Frontalot Fall Tour Diary Days 2-5: Northampton & Hamden

Which MC is that?WARNING: This post contains moody, spooky and downright weird photos.  I’ve been on something of an artsy photo kick lately, due largely to the awesome capabilities of my new-ish EVO 4G paired with the vintage effects of Camera360.  I post about it, you get to see it.  The upshot is that the contents of the photographs may not coordinate with my prose.  Unrelated: I went to I Write Like and was informed that my word choice and cadence are similar to techno-blogger Cory Doctorow.  Perhaps it is the frequency of commas and exclamatory asides?  The jury is out on whether or not this is a good thing.

Blah blah blah my interests blah blah.  Who cares!  The news on the Front is rich with intrigue.  You were last left wondering with baited breath how our show at the Iron Horse would go.  I have an answer: stupendously.  The turnout was far higher than we expected, and despite a number of logistical setbacks that were primarily my fault (no keyboard stand, no bag of essential cables) we still managed to sound check on time, even with Front in absentia.  Where was he?  Driving back to Holyoke to retrieve said bag which I had failed to bring to the gig.  D’oh! Luckily the venue had extra patch and power cables, enabling me to make good use of everyone (except Damian’s) time.  The keyboard stand dilemma was resolved by the generous graces of Sturgis’s friend and artist extraordinaire Peter Smolenski, a truly stupendous individual to whom I would direct a standing The navel is the source of all things emoovation, had I one at my disposal.

The opening band, Glitter Guerilla, rapped and shimmied their way around the stage to the thick beats of their iPod, beefed up by a live bass player.  They also wore sunglasses.  Brandon toned down the glitz with his brief acoustic set which featured one of his “whiny breakup songs” called Ashes & Stains along with a song I’d never heard before called Ketchup & Mayo.  Who knew Thousand Island dressing could be so kinky?  We spiced up the rear, as it were, with our best set of the tour so far.  The audience was enthusiastically inebriated and all sorts of awesome, giving us the extra boost we needed to tear shit up.  There are clips from the show here and here.

The only issue with the show was the monitor level of my keyboard, which was very low.  The next day, on our way to New Haven, Brandon and I stopped at a music store in Manchester where I picked up a Simmons DA200S drum monitor which is actually perfect for keyboards.  It has stereo inputs, XLR pass-throughs for the console and independent volume control for the speakers and the console.  A dream!  It is also wedge-shaped, which was honestly the key element.  Why don’t more companies make wedge-shaped powered monitors for keyboard players?  Oh well.  Their loss.  Simmons, you got my buck.

We met up with Front at Brandon’s house in New Haven, sadly without the Sturgenius, who was back at home working.  What gives, man?  Bros before dough!  Plans were made to go rock climbing, but they fell through, so we The cheery parking lot next to the venuechowed down on some Indian food and went to bed early (for musicians) in order to rest up for the next night’s show at The Space in Hamden, CT.  The venue is a really cool semi-underground room with great gear and proprietors who are clearly passionate about the arts.  Unfortunately it is located off of the beaten track in an office park, and paired with a rainy Monday night and a lack of a liquor license it made for a low turnout.  Undaunted, we rocked the room with all of our might and then proceeded to the nearest diner for snacks.

I’d like to take this paragraph to pontificate on what I hate about the west coast: the dearth of good breakfast sausages.  Everything is “chicken apple this” and “tofu vegan hybrid that.”  Sausage isn’t supposed to be healthy.  It is supposed to be delicious.  There is one exception in California: Saag’s breakfast links.  The great tragedy of those mighty meats is that you can only buy them frozen in packs of 40, on top of which you need a wholesale license.  Many years ago I considered starting an underground sausage trade to bring these delectable treats to the common man, but the threat of causing an obesity epidemic gave me pause.  As did the concept of having “sausage parties.”

Conversely, the east coast is a mecca of delicious intestinal treats.  Salty, greasy and succulent dollops of porky goodness.  The diner at which we ate failed to disappoint.  I had freedom toast, Damian had a turkey melt, and 45 x 60" glycee prints start at $15,000Brandon… well, Brandon decided that nothing would be more delicious than pairing mashed potatoes and gravy with a side of pickled beets.  Junior, anyone?  Proving that he was a dedicated environmentally-conscious artiste to the last, Branded proceeded to recycle the considerable leftovers into a masterpiece entitled Strangely Gleeful Scalping Victim.

Today we have the day off and are sitting around taking care of such critical duties as posting to our blogs.  Tomorrow we reunite with Sturgis to rock fetish night at Club Hell in Providence, RI.  Bring your leather chaps!

2 Responses to “Frontalot Fall Tour Diary Days 2-5: Northampton & Hamden”

  1. Rictor Rockets

    Thanks for coming by, guys, and thanks for the link to my YouTube channel. That was one of the best shows in general that I’ve been to in years, and certainly the best at the Horse since 1993. I hope to see you all in Northampton real soon, or even PAXEast before then.

  2. PhxDee

    The idea of you guys playing at Club Hell on a fetish night kinda gives me a girl-boner. It’s not too often the kinksters and the supergeeks meet (in public, that is). Two of the things I like best in one room? Too bad I’m not in RI tomorrow… :(